Lesbians dual parent rights case before Israeli Supreme Court

Illustrated rainbow pride flag on a pink background.

An American-Israeli lesbian couple who weren’t registered as dual mothers of their son despite a Court’s ruling, will bring their case before Israel’s Supreme Court.

On Sunday Nicole and Ruti Berner Kadish’s case will be represented in Jerusalem by the Association for Civil Rights in Israel (ACRI) before a panel of nine High Court judges.

The judiciary will be asked to order the Interior Ministry to continue executing a 2000 ruling, which had endorsed the registration of the couple as dual mothers of their child Matan, Ruti’s biological son, adopted by Nicole under California law.

Following the 2000 ruling, the Interior Ministry submitted a petition claiming that clerks could not be forced to register an adoption in contrast with Israeli values and norms, but the Court dismissed the request, allowing Nicole to adopt Matan.

But since then the Ministry has challenged the order and numerous same-sex couples have been left without any legal relation to their partners’ children.

Nicole and Ruti have had two more children who haven’t been registered as children of both women.

ACRI’s chief legal counsel Dan Yakir, who will represent the case before the Supreme Court on Sunday, stressed that the right to family is a basic right for all individuals regardless of sexual orientation.

“In this case, the Court has rightly decided to order the registration of the adoption and to ensure that Matan has two lawful mothers.

“The Interior Ministry’s petition is an attempt to overthrow a fair and necessary ruling, and we hope the Court will adhere to its original decision” he said.

Last year the Israeli Family Court recognised another lesbian couple as joint mothers.

The ruling, which marked the end of a 17-year legal battle, allowed Tal and Avital Yarous-Hakak to be listed as the mothers of their three children.

The Prime Minister of Israel’s lesbian daughter, Dana Olmert, became mother last September when her partner gave birth to a baby girl.

34-year-old Dana lives with her life partner Dafna Ben Zvi and, according to Ynetnews the Olmert-Ben Zvi couple has an excellent relationship with the Prime Minister.